Bad Science

This is the sort of debate that really gets me angry: an article in the i titled “Bad habits or plain bad luck: experts split in cancer debate. Researchers divided on whether the disease is genetic or caused by carcinogens.”

The debate is apparently between John Hopkins University where Christian Tomasetti and Bert Vogelstein claim that cancer is produced by cell division, and since this is largely beyond our control, the disease is the result of luck. These men are mathematicians. Opposed to this is Dr Yusuf Hannun of Stonybrook University in New York claims that carcinogens are a large factor.

It seems they think we are vegetables, the result of exposing us to certain chemicals or nutrients and standing back and watching what happens. Decades ago it was noticed that a high number of cancer deaths were in people following the death of a long term partner. We have also known for a long time that we all have cancers within us, like viruses that cause the co-called common cold, and in both cases is released when we are run down. Grief can be a major cause of being run down, hence the spouse deaths.

I get so sick of hearing of battle to find a cure for cancer based on specific chemicals when so many cases the major factors are emotional, social, human, whatever.

The article ends with “Overall 70 to 90% of cancer is preventable, according to Dr Hunnan in the journal Nature. But that depends on knowing what to avoid and importantly, having the will to avoid it. Happy people have that will. People in mourning or depressed for whatever reason do not. When you look at the huge cost of cancer medicine, you would think people would be looking at cheaper alternatives, but sadly, this is not the case. Happiness can be incredibly cheap.

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